Four months after the explosion at the Garden, a place where young women known as the Butterflies were kept captive, FBI agents Brandon Eddison, Victor Hanoverian, and Mercedes Ramirez are still entrenched in the aftermath, helping survivors in the process of adjusting to life on the outside. With winter coming to an end, the Butterflies have longer, warmer days of healing ahead. But for the agents, the impending thaw means one gruesome thing: a chilling guarantee that somewhere in the country, another young woman will turn up dead in a church with her throat slit and her body surrounded by flowers.
Priya Sravasti’s sister fell victim to the killer years ago. Now she and her mother move every few months, hoping for a new beginning. But when she ends up in the madman’s crosshairs, the hunt takes on new urgency. Only with Priya’s help can the killer be found—but will her desperate hope for closure compel her to put her very life on the line?
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Darla Jean Carmichael was the first. Then he saw her with her arm tucked into a man’s arm at the elbow. But he felt her hand didn’t belong there because she was his. She has always been his. He is furious and heartbroken. Then she laughs with him and that is yours also. The laugh had always soothed, teased away the rage that was always close to the surface. Then he sees sees Darla and the man kiss. Then he wants to know how Darla would let herself be tarnished. Darla is now worthless like all the other floozies in the world. But he loves Darla enough to save her even from herself.Then he walks in the church and knows he doesn’t have much time before the preacher is back. She is the first but she won’t be the last. Years later Victor/Vic is the Supervisory Special Agent in charge.Vic had been with the Bureau for thirty years. Three and one half months after they had rescues the surviving girls from the burning Garden that Mercedes- who is a teammate and friend- is still using the Butterfly names - the names the victims were given by their captor. Special Agent Brandon Edison looked at the two photos sitting atop his file cabinet. One was of him and his sister on a long ago Halloween one of the last times Brandone saw his sister before she got taken off the street on the way home from school. She was only eight years old then. It had been twenty years. Priya and her mother move every few months. But then the flowers started appearing and they are afraid. Priya is struggling to cope with her sister’s death, her father's abandonment , and wanting revenge. Priya is friends with Edison and Vic since her sister had been killed five years ago. The Spring Killer only kills once a year in May. The killer has done this for the last seventeen years. The killer also kills his victims in a church and he leaves the girls naked with flowers around their body’s. He believes he is following God’s orders to kill all impure girls. I gave this story a three as I had mixed feelings. I did feel this book had a good plot. I liked the action and suspense and twists and turns. But the killer became obvious. Some of the things in this book were just unrealistic for me. I loved Being in the serial killer's mind and seeing his justifications for his killings. But this book did frustrate and confuse me at times. So I enjoyed this at times and at others not so much.
I would like to thank NetGalley, and Thomas& Mercer for an ARC of "The Roses of May" by Dot Hutchison for my honest review. The genres of this novel are Mystery and Thriller, and General Fiction (Adult). This is the second book following "The Butterfly Garden" by Dot Hutchison. This takes place approximately four months after the explosion of the Garden where young girls known as "Butterflies" were captive. Some have survived and have to heal. The characters are described as complicated and complex. Three of the FBI agents from the first book are in this book, Brandon, Eddison, Victor Hanoverian and Mercedes Ramirez. In "The Roses of May", the author describes Priya, the sister of a victim that had been killed five years before. Priya is suspicious of her surroundings, and tries to be tough. She has conflicted feelings, and at times is depressed and angry at what happened to her sister. Priya and her mother move several times in order to be safe. Priya's mother is described as dominant, and protective of her daughter. Priya and her mother have been in touch with the three FBI agents. Someone has been stalking Priya and is leaving a variety of flowers that are significant on Priya's doorstep. Who is the stalker? Who has killed Priya's sister and other people? What is their motivation? I found this a tense. suspenseful, action packed thriller with twists and turns. I would recommend this book as an intriguing mystery and thriller.